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Alireza Boroumand is a graduate of Ashton’s Immigration Consultant Diploma (IMCD) program. After graduating in December 2011 from the full-time course, Alireza opened his own immigration consulting firm. ICON Canadian Immigration Inc. now has offices in Vancouver, Quebec and Iran, and Alireza has personally helped over 200 people successfully immigrate to Canada. Alireza recently sat down with the Ashton Insider to talk about the IMCD program and the path that led him to Ashton.
Alireza is a native of Tehran, Iran. In 1999 he traveled to Canada for the first time to study French in Quebec. Alireza immediately fell in love with the country and knew he wanted to return. “Right away, I felt like this was the place I belonged. The people, the multiculturalism, the language, nature; I was so drawn to everything about Canada.” Alireza returned to Tehran and completed a Ph.D. in French Language and Literature at the University of Tehran. Alireza then accepted a teaching position with the school, where he remained for four years. It was during this time that Alireza began working with potential Canadian immigrants. “I tutored individuals hoping to immigrate to Canada in French and English in order to help them strengthen their applications. My students had a high success rate and my business grew very quickly. I decided to pursue immigration as a full-time career and began researching the immigration consulting industry in Canada.” Around this time, the Canadian government passed legislation requiring all individuals charging a fee for providing immigration services to be licensed and regulated.
Alireza began preparing his own immigration application, while at the same time researching academic programs that would prepare him to write the Immigration Consultants of Canada Regulatory Council’s requirement-to-entry Full Skills Exam. “I chose Ashton because of its graduate’s high exam pass rate, and because of the length of the program. The full-time course was short but intensive, so I knew that I would be able to begin my career more quickly than if I chose another program.” Alireza believes he made the right choice, and noted the quality of the IMCD faculty. “The instructors were extremely knowledgeable and experienced, Nevena (Djuricic) in particular. She was a judge for several years and was so well-versed in all the different legal aspects of immigration.” Although Alireza was already familiar with many aspects of Canadian immigration, the IMCD program helped him develop his communication skills. “My classmates were very diverse, students hailed from all around the world. It was a great experience to get that exposure to different cultures and backgrounds, which is so necessary as an immigration consultant.”
After completing the program and passing the Full Skills Exam, Alireza set up shop in a North Vancouver office and began working with students, refugees and skilled workers hoping to immigrate to Canada. Business grew so quickly that he opened an office in Tehran and a virtual office in Montreal, and now employs a staff of three.
Alireza’s days are challenging and varied, but always busy. “I often feel like I work 24-hours a day. Because my clients live in different time zones around the world, I have to be available when they need me.” The long hours don’t seem to bother Alireza, who noted, “It is extremely rewarding work to help others achieve their dream of immigrating to Canada. I have always been someone who believes that through education and hard work, anyone can achieve their dreams.”
Alireza is continuing to work towards his own dreams, and plans to open ICON offices in Dubai and the United States within the next five years. “It doesn’t matter what social class people come from, how rich or poor they are, people invariably want to improve their lives. To have a career where I can directly assist them in achieving a better life is a wonderful feeling.”